The Hudson County Community College (HCCC) board of trustees approves funding for the construction of a new student center located at 81 Sip Avenue on the HCCC Journal Square Campus in Jersey City. The location is owned by HCCC, but has been off-line since the fall 2017 opening of the college’s new, state-of-the-art STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) building. The construction work will include complete demo/renovation of the approximately 26,000-square-foot, two-story building which has a mezzanine level and basement. Plans call for the installation of new HVAC systems, sprinklers, elevators, emergency generator, and a direct, indoor connection adjoining the Student Center to the neighboring HCCC Gabert Library. The existing roof will also be replaced. Work on the building will begin this month.
“This is yet another step the College is taking in the creation of state-of-the-art, urban campuses that afford our students the very best in technology, safety, and convenience,” said HCCC Board of Trustees Chair William J. Netchert, Esq.
The college’s capital improvement program began more than two decades ago when the college owned just one building. In the time since HCCC has constructed nearly a dozen award-winning buildings that comprise the comprehensive Journal Square Campus in Jersey City and the North Hudson Campus in Union City.
“This is Hudson County Community College’s first dedicated student center building,” said HCCC President Dr. Chris Reber. “This new facility will provide students with a place to study, to relax, and to interact with one another, sharing ideas and building relationships. We are excited and very proud to begin working on this project and look forward to opening its doors and welcoming our students early next year.”
Dr. Reber said the building is designed to accommodate students and their needs. The first-floor plans include a student lounge, sandwich-and-refreshments café, security command center, and an indoor pass-through to the Gabert Library. The second floor will house offices for Student Life, Student Government, and student organizations, as well as a multi-purpose room for events and meetings, and an open lounge. The lower level includes office space for the College’s Security, Facilities and Custodial Services Departments, and storage space.
The HCCC board of trustees approved a revised budget for the project at a cost not to exceed $8,232,378. Di Cara | Rubino Architects of Wayne was awarded the $90,000 contract for architectural and engineering services and APS Contracting, Inc. of Paterson was awarded the $6,097,000 contract for renovation. The project will be financed with Chapter 12 funding, a state program for county colleges.
The student center is the latest of numerous construction projects undertaken by HCCC that have transformed the Journal Square area. These include the 72,000-square-foot Culinary Arts Institute/Conference Center; 14,000-square-foot Cundari Center (home to HCCC Nursing and Health Sciences); the Association of College and Research Library award-winning, 112,000-square-foot Gabert Library; and the spectacular, six-story, 70,070-square-foot STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Building. All of the college’s capital improvement endeavors have been completed with appropriated capital. As a result, the college does not carry any capital debt, and not one dollar of student tuition is utilized for debt.
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